By Jim Miller
Lets examine how false teachers sneak into our assemblies. This is a topic that needs to be addressed by every sound congregation left out there. The scriptures clearly teach that there will be some even among us that will rise up against the truth. 2Pe_2:1 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
John said, "They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them" (1 Jn. 4:5). The world will approve the message of the false teacher. We see this today when a preacher or teacher comes in and starts proclaiming we must not condemn those who will not repent. They preach a gospel of love and compassion that ignores the rest of Gods instructions to reprove and rebuke those who live in sin. They use gentleness, kindness and love to an extreme extent so they appear to be righteous in the sight those who listen to them. When confronted on their error they will accuse you of attacking them and say because you care enough to correct them that your actions are unloving and Un-Christ like then the name calling will begin. They will go all out to destroy your creditability in the eyes of those around them.
Jesus said in Matthew 7:15-20 that a false teacher was a "corrupt tree" that brought "forth evil fruit." Christ said a "corrupt tree" could not "bring forth good fruit." The logical consequence of all false teaching is the practice of false doctrine in life. Jesus calls false teachers "corrupt trees" because of the fruit they produce (Matt. 7:17). When these men enter in among you, you will start to see the clan mentality arise these men seek to divide the assembly drawing away those who will follow what they want to hear setting brother against brother all the time making false accusations against those who know the truth.
Jesus said all religious teaching is either from (1) heaven or (2) men (Matt. 21:25). What authority does a false teacher give for his doctrine? Not the word of God. Paul said some gave heed to "fables and commandments of men" (Tit. 1:14). John said that those who knew God "heareth us" that is, they will hear the apostles (1 Jn. 4:6). These false teachers and preachers today do not use the scripture alone as their authority but they spread a doctrine of smooth words as did the serpent in the garden. They never preach the hard things of the word that will convict man of his sins but preach an all inclusive doctrine of all is peace and love.The whole counsel of God is totally foreign to these men. What Christ or the apostles said means nothing to a false teacher. Any false teacher will avoid the plain statement of Scripture. Read the word of God to a false teacher and he will take the commandments of men any time before he will take the word of God. Try it and see.
John said the false teachers "are of the world" (1 Jn. 4:5). They speak "of the world" (1 Jn. 4:5). The world will hear the false teacher. The world will always side with the false teacher; the false teacher will always side with the world. The false teachers will always join together with the world to oppose the teaching of Christ. These men will come in and little by little change the truth slowly they will introduce things that do not belong such as movie nites instead of a Sunday evening service or Game night and many other things not authorized buy Gods word all the time saying these things are part of fellowship. The false teachers among us seek to bring as many worldly pleasures as they can get away with all in the name of brotherly love and caring. All the while they are leading you down a path to hell with them.
Jesus said, "Beware of false prophets" (Matt. 7:15). We would beware of a rattlesnake because of the physical harm it would do to us. A false preacher is just as dangerous to us spiritually as a rattlesnake is to us physically.
Paul said, "Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness" (Eph. 5:11). False teachers can not be fellowshipped. I will not announce a service in which a known false teacher is the speaker. What good does it do to announce such, and then turn around in almost the same breath and say that he will teach some things with which one might not agree? Paul said, "Mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them" (Rom. 16:17).
Paul told Timothy, "Watch thou in all things." The reason was: "for the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables" (2 Tim. 4:1-5). One should keep his eyes open for false teachers.
Folks your very soul depends on you not being deceived and these are but a few of the ways to determine if one is a false teacher. These men are very good at their deception and you must constantly be on your toes and deal with them quickly before they do more damage than you can repair.